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Gender, Infrastructure and the Production of Domesticity in the (Post)Communist City

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 840633

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 October 2019

  • End date

    30 September 2021

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.3.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 212 933,76

  • EU contribution

    € 212 933,76

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON

United Kingdom

Objective

This research proposes to investigate the relationship between gender, the (post)communist state and architecture in the passage from socialism to its aftermath in Bucharest, Romania. The project explores the manner in which housing infrastructure was employed as a political technology in the production of gendered subjectivities—that is, women’s embodied experience of the built environment—in the communist and post-communist periods. The fall of the communist regime in 1989 and the emergence of capitalist democracy served both to contest and reshape former boundaries between the private and the public realms. At the same time, housing infrastructure is the main inheritance of the communist system and constitutes, within a new socio-political condition permeated by Western images, the physical structure that must accommodate a new type of domesticity. The research defines domesticity as a changing set of attitudes and praxes that are specifically linked to the political intention embedded within the communist housing projects. The main research objective is to establish the significance of housing infrastructures built in Bucharest between 1955 -1984 in the regulation of the home, the family and women’s roles in the communist and post-communist periods. The research will achieve this objective by interrogating, on the one hand, the interaction between processes of regulating, designing, building, using and imagining socialist housing and, on the other hand, the actual lived experiences of women. The approach of this research project is interdisciplinary, employing ethnographic methods, archival research, and drawing on specific theoretical frameworks—from architecture, anthropology, and gender studies—for analysis and interpretation. The research will be a unique contribution to existing scholarship on the legacies of communism in states from Eastern Europe, by relating questions of gender to the constitution of domesticity through infrastructure.

Coordinator

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON

Address

Gower Street
Wc1e 6bt London

United Kingdom

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 212 933,76

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 840633

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 October 2019

  • End date

    30 September 2021

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.3.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 212 933,76

  • EU contribution

    € 212 933,76

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON

United Kingdom